Sex Work

A Rentboy.com John Speaks Out

'At this point, I would not be having sex, would not be engaging in any sexual release,' if there were no sex workers.

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No victims here.
Rentboy.com

In August, the Department of Homeland Security raided and arrested the staff of Rentboy.com, a website that for nearly 20 years helped men across the world connect with male escorts.

The arrests were just the latest in federal and local government efforts to try to end the existence of prostitution and sex work. Typically when discussing female sex workers, government officials are quick to lay claims of human trafficking and to suggest that women's participation in prostitution is largely non-consensual. That didn't happen here. There was no suggestion that anybody was being harmed at all or forced . Rather, the defendants were accused of violating federal law simply by facilitating prostitution across state and international lines. It didn't matter whether anybody was actually harmed.

In the wake of the bust, several escorts who advertised their services on the site have come forward in the media to openly defend the services they provide to their clients. Much more quiet, for obvious reasons, were the actual Rentboy.com customers. With the current anti-prostitution hysteria pushing toward punishing Johns rather than sex workers, the customers have a lot to lose.

Nevertheless, one customer of Rentboy.com contacted Reason, interested in talking about why he turns to escorts for erotic fulfillment. In a 40-minute phone interview he spoke about his experiences with escorts and why his difficult personal background made them necessary.

To protect this customer's identity, we will be referring to him simply as Tom (not his real name). Tom is 31, lives in a major metropolitan area, and has an advanced education. Any other names mentioned in the interview have also been changed to protect their identities.

Reason: How long have you been using escorts?

Tom: Consistently for about a little bit over a year—about a year and six months. That's not my first hiring experience. My first hiring experience was when I was 20.

Reason: So that's a pretty young age. Why did you turn to escorts at such a young age?

Tom: It took me a very, very long time to come out to anyone. I didn't come out to myself until I was like 17. I didn't come out to my parents until I was 19, specifically because I didn't want to be put it into reparative therapy.

And so, because of that it's always been a little bit hard for me to find partners specifically growing up where I was, which was a rural, Midwest place. There wasn't a lot of gay men around, and so it was sort of a straight practicality at the age of 20, because I was like, "I wanna get this done." By the way I didn't lose my virginity to an escort. It was just a thing like "I wanna get this done." I had had sex but I didn't enjoy it. … Maybe if I hire the guy he would be more attracted, the money would make it more of a distant thing. That's why I hired at 20. That experience went okay. It was not something, at that point in my life, I felt like I need to follow up on.

The major thing about me is I have, I had, a lot of guilt over my sexual orientation. I'm also a little bit kinky. Some of my kinks, because I was raised in a devoutly Catholic, then I'm not gonna say another religion, it was a protestant faith that was specifically anti-LGBT. For years I had a localized guilt around my sexuality and any sort of context. After the experiment when I was 20, I was dating a person, Nick, for a year, and this is not an escort relationship. It was just a perfectly normal relationship. I sat him down and said look we have to try something. I gave him a list. And he elected to give me a spanking. And, it didn't go well. Not like I was hurt or anything. It just didn't work, because he wasn't really into it. And then he dumped me two weeks later because of this.

Because of this, I went too far too fast the other way. And a partner I had for about a month was so abusive towards me. And they … they put me into a mental health hospital.

After that I had one more three-year relationship, where I just settled and it wasn't abusive, it was an ok relationship. It just didn't work, and when time came, time came. So it's very, very hard for me as a matter of my personality to get sexual release, because of all of these experiences of being judged, of being hurt, and the background of my parents being upset with me for being queer. Other sorts of outlets that work for other gay men don't work for me. I cannot hook up. I cannot go to a bath house. Does that all make sense?

Reason: Just to make it clear, the entirety of your sexual experience has not just been with escorts?

Tom: No. It's not even the case that in the last year, when I've been hiring regularly, my entirety of my sexual experience has been with escorts. Now with that being said, my main escort I see, his name's Chris. Me and Chris are continuing in spite of the Rentboy raid. … But it's very unlikely that we'll be caught because he's financially stable enough that he does not have to accept new clients. In which case, after we have a session on Saturday, as soon as I make sure he's not wearing a wire, because, again, trust issues, we're just going to continue on, as much as we can, as if nothing has happened.

Reason:  There's been a lot of interviews with the escorts themselves, but not as much of the experience of Johns. What is your experience with a paid escort like, as a John?

Tom: For the most part, unless you've had professional sex, it won't make much sense for you. But one reason why I do it is that the cash makes it professional. Ok? Because me and Chris at the end of the day will never ever be anything other than escort and client.  It keeps it professional. That makes the sex—I don't want to say meaningless, because that sounds awful—but it's just sex.

I see Chris for two separate and two very different things. The first thing I see him for is escort work, which is what I've been talking about. The second thing I see him for is massage and coaching work. The massage—I'm actually just being massaged. And the massage work has been working through me and my trust issues, doing trust-building exercises. We relax.  … Combinations of those two things keeps it professional. He is being a release.

It helps relieve tension, but the main thing it does and it has done for me—and the main reason I want the story out there—is I now enjoy my sexuality in a way  in which I don't think would have happened unless I hired escorts. It's specifically because the cash makes it professional. It's bad customer service for him to judge me for my interests.

Now, I'm not saying he has to put up with everything I want.  In fact, there's some things that I've asked for that he says not to. I never push. If he says no, then it's no. The other thing is … the cash is not a sufficient condition for me to have sex with Chris. It's a necessary, but it's not sufficient.

That professionalism and that distance is profoundly helpful. It takes me to a place where I can just enjoy sexuality. It's nice and clean. With the massage work, it's gotten to the place where I don't have guilt anymore. Even though I was an out and proud queer man for 10 years, if I saw a man I was attracted to I would get pangs of guilt. I don't get that anymore because of the work that me and Chris have done.

Reason: You don't feel that you could have found that without paying for an escort?

Tom: I don't think given my personality, given that the cash is like a safety net and everything like that. I don't think it could have been the case that that I would have done that, or even if I could have gotten that, the commercial sex aspect of it sped it up or made it easier to find or made it more likely to happen. I can't say definitively in all possible worlds whether I would have needed commercial sex to get this. I can say that for 10 years of trying I never got it, and doing the work I've done with Chris has really helped in this regard.

Reason:  What made Rentboy.com so useful?

Tom: There's several things about Rentboy that made it very, very useful. The first thing is it was a market. So you have information there. It allowed me and the clients to look at all of the escorts, read all the text. I want this noted, I did not hire Chris the first time specifically because of his pictures. Actually he was not the most attractive to me. He listed himself as being a good listener and having a college education, etc., which made me hire him for the first time. So there's that. So, by having all of the sexual groups there, you can look for it, you can engage with it. It makes it like hiring a plumber, basically.

The other thing is, a lot of times escorts on Rentboy are established, so there's other sites which have reviews from other clients describing how they are. What sort of things they'll do. How they are, personality-wise. Because trust is such a big thing for me, I know if an escort has, you know, 26 reviews, that means he's been at this for a while; in general he's a safe person or a safe escort. And so because he has the track record there, and he's professional, I can go to him get service, and then there's that.

And then the other thing is, because they're listing themselves on a public forum, if they do mistreat me as a John or as a client, I can give them a negative review. The one criticism I would have of Rentboy—though I understand why given the legal situation they didn't have this—is I, as a John, a client, would be more than willing, though not necessarily to put my picture, to put my profile out there and have escorts review me as a client.

Reason: So, like what ride-sharing services do?

Tom: Yeah. And I know for a fact some websites, which the government has not shut down, they do that. They have both listings for escorts and for clients. The other thing about Rentboy is, because it was such a major hub, it worked like a market. That's the best way I can explain it, especially if you're a libertarian.

But it's also, because, because commercial sex is a service … if you're looking for something very specific, whether that means some kind of sex act, or someone who wants someone with blue eyes and 5 foot 8, you can look on Rentboy quickly. Sometimes, this is sort of true for me as well. I'm a very busy person, sometimes. You know what I'm saying? Again, I want to stress, that everything I'm saying is from my own perspective, I can't really say how it works for other clients. I don't know if I'm an anomaly, given how much I think about doing this sort of thing ethically, or if I'm completely in the mainstream for clients.

The two main reasons why I'm really upset about Rentboy being shut down is: One, it's been around for 18 years. It was an institution in the sex work community. Sex work is dangerous. It is not understood, it's taboo. And apart from it being illegal, for sex workers—I'm not the client who thinks that this is an easy job. It's not. If you're good at your job, it can be a very rewarding job, but if you get a bad client, well you can end up dead. Rentboy really helps escorts organize and protect themselves. And that's just gone now. And then the other thing is, given that commercial sex has really helped me accept my sexuality, I don't really need. … I don't know if you read the indictment of Rentboy or the complaint?

Reason: Yes, I did read the complaint.

Tom: I don't know if you're familiar with this, but there's this thing from the 1960s from the Florida legislature called the "purple pamphlet." It was this bizarre government document that cost $100,000 to produce in the '60s. It was sold as pornography at one point.  It was basically pornographic images, and the government talking about, in lucid terms, what gay men do in the bedroom. If you actually read the Rentboy complaint, which I have, so much of it is just like rubbernecking, looking at what queer men do in the bedroom. Even if I thought sex work should be illegal, which I don't, there's no reason to go into detail and define what "rimming" is, as the complaint does. Or define what a sex sling is. And go through for every freaking type of play on the site. There's no reason to do that. The only reason why it's there … is to demonize male homosexuality. And I thought we were beyond that, given that we just got marriage rights.

Reason: So have you and Chris spoken about Rentboy being shut down?

Tom: Yes. I am a perpetual checker of the news. And so I happened to be emailing him, setting up my appointment on Saturday, and I immediately put into the email, "Rentboy got shut down." We both immediately deleted our email accounts. I changed my phone, everything like that. I've done some other banking stuff.

Now I don't know what he's done, other than he's deleted his email account, and I know for a fact, he's changed another ad he had on, because he does massage work and escorting, which were two separate ads. He had it listed as an erotic massage, which I don't think is technically illegal, but he pulled that as part of his ad. He's not accepting new escort clients, and even with just massage clients, he's in a position where he can say to a new client, "I don't give happy endings." He doesn't know if they'll cross-reference his identity online and try to do an entrapment thing against him.

Reason: Have either of you heard from anyone in the government?

Tom: I have not heard from anyone in the government. The only information I have that's connected to the Rentboy stuff is what's been publicly available. I've just been checking online, and there's been a lot of editorials. One thing that's really weird about this, and I'm sure it's mostly coincidence, it strikes me as really weird and extremely problematic that after [lesbian and gay] people got full recognition of being equal before the law, that another form of sexual expression between consenting adults was targeted, despite the fact that it had been open for 18 years. The timing just feels off or weird. You know what I'm saying? And there's tremendous pressure in our society to get married. And these sorts of relationships are not, "We met hot men in college, got married, moved to the suburbs and had 2.5 kids,"—like that's what we should be doing. Assimilationist tendencies or pressure to assimilate—it just feels weird that Rentboy got shut down now, right on the coattails of marriage.

Reason: So, the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Justice were behind this raid, made a big splash about it, talking about how they busted this huge prostitution ring, even though those of us who know how the site is used, know it's not a prostitution ring. What do you think it is they just don't understand about sex work in 2015?

Tom: People often, conflate, because they don't understand it, forced prostitution and sex work, or sex trafficking, because the way in which our society processes it, people assume that if a person is escorting, they're somehow being forced or compelled to do it. I actually take steps to make sure the escorts I hire aren't in dire economic necessity or under any sort or compelling.

One reason, if it was legal to go to a brothel, I would not use one, because I much prefer to do sex work as an independent meeting another person, because that way there's not a third party person to be exploiting them. The other thing is, I will not hire an escort if I think they are an alcoholic or drug addict. At least for me, philosophically I can understand how that might not be a great choice because it's being driven by an addiction.

As far as the government is concerned, quite frankly I think for the most part, it's a charade. It's morality theater about, "We're gonna go after these people who are expressing their sexuality in a way we don't approve of." The only thing a government should be concerned about, as far as sexual behavior, is if it is consensual or not. And prohibitions against sex work are, as far as I can see, not rational and related to making sure it's consensual or not.

If anything, a blanket prohibition makes it harder for sex workers who are in there being coerced to come forward. That's one of the major dangers, and one of the reasons I really think it should be legal. God forbid Chris or any sex worker I saw gets a bad client—who's a jackass, who rapes him—he can't go to the police. If he goes to the police, not only is he dealing with "men can't rape men" [attitudes], but he's always dealing with "you're a sex worker, he paid you, it can't be rape," which is bullshit. So that's why I'm saying, for the life of me I can't understand why in 2015, why the federal government, especially homeland security … I don't understand it.

I see laws against prostitution as intolerant. For a very long time this is a behavior that some people don't engage in. Some people do. Some people engage in it consensually. For some people it's very, very valuable. For some people it's just how they make ends meet, depending on the person. It's a very personal thing. At the end of the day, it has no real bearing what the government is doing. We know from Romer v. Evans, that mere moral prohibition against something is not sufficient grounds for making a practice illegal. In Lawrence v. Texas, for the life of me, I cannot see how Kennedy's reasoning about an ordered liberty about private choices between consenting adults doesn't cover prostitution. He has that weird declaration at the end of his opinion that this case has nothing to do with prostitution. It comes out of nowhere, he just stuck it in there to cover his ass.

Reason: What would your personal erotic life be like if there wasn't sex work right now?

Tom: At this point, I would not be having sex, would not be engaging in any sexual release, and anything like that. One of the things Chris provides to me is a safe feeling. I said at the beginning of this conversation I've had non-commercial sex, well the reason I'm able to have that is I want to have at least three dates with a guy before I can start having sex with him. The week that Rentboy got raided was a bad week for me. I was seeing this guy for like a month, and I had three dates, and on the fourth we had setbacks. Maybe it doesn't work out, or at least we're taking a break.

I do know that this sort of practice has helped me. It strikes me as profoundly obvious, "need" is a funny word. We think of need as what we need to stay alive. Obviously sex is not a need, but then neither is a phone, nor entertainment, nor video games. Among a whole bunch of things that people do anyway, in terms of happiness in the broadest possible sense, it seems obvious to me that sex is need, and sex work for people like me who have several barriers: being queer, being kinky, having trust issues, that finding the right sort of a person might be more difficult. You might need sex workers to help with that.

It strikes me as profoundly cruel for people who have more barriers to an enjoyable sex life, to just criminalize a method that works for both parties. I've talked a lot about what sex work has done for me. The thing is, we tend to think of sex workers as people who only do sex work. But Chris is an artist; he has a lot of education in art. It's hard being an artist in America in 2015. One of the ways he has balanced his life is that he has his own sort of goals, he has his art and can live by doing sex work and a couple of other things. For the government to intrude upon this arrangement of mine and Chris'. … I'm exploring my sexuality, enjoying my sexuality, lowering my sexual guilt, etc. And Chris, I don't want people to think of this as only a commercialized thing, he finds what he considers a good life by being able to do this sort of work.

Reason: What else do you want people to understand about this situation?

Tom: We have this conception of clients or Johns as perverts in training. People who have some sort of sense of entitlement, some sense of big ego, where they're like, "I'm going to pay this person to treat this mainly as a sexual object." There are definitely clients like that out there, because there are definitely people like that anyway out there. Bad clients are bad clients.

The thing is, I don't think an abusive person is going to be more abusive because they're seeking out a sex worker. People do sex work for multiple different reasons. An abusive person, the problem isn't that they're seeing a sex worker, it's that they're an abusive jackass. It's somewhat of a cliché, but not all Johns are jackasses. It seems weird to me to say that I because I'm a client have a sense of entitlement to another person's body. When I in fact have paid through like $6,000.00 over the last year to Chris to have this commercialized relationship with him. If I thought I was entitled to Chris, I wouldn't pay him the money. You know what I'm saying? It just seems like a bad fallacious sort of argument.

NEXT: Debate Recap: Fiorina, Paul, and Carson Put The Donald on His Heels

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  1. Thank you Scott, and thank Tom as well. Very informative, insightful, and reasonable.

    One thing not to lose sight of in all this mess is the fan-out impact. So many on-line sites that connect men with men have shut down, so many agencies who perform services to connect buyers and sellers have gone dark if not shut down.
    This is not “just” RentBoy being impacted, not “just” their clients and escorts.

    And this is not right, not any of it.
    Thank you for your support.

    1. Well said Shirley, thank you. And of course it isn’t just sites for male providers. Female oriented sex work sites like MyRedbook.com have also been targeted and shut down by the authorities.

      As Ken Shultz points out in a very wise comment later in this thread, all our rights are inter-related, and we need to stand in solidarity whenever anyone is the victim of legal aggression.

      Those who want to help support the fight to decriminalize prostitution are invited to contribute money to the lawsuit to overturn California’s anti-prostitution law, enacted in 1961, as unconstitutional — to read more about this historic effort, and to help us cover legal costs, visit http://www.DecriminalizeSexWork.com.

  2. The thing is, we tend to think of sex workers as people who only do sex work. But Chris is an artist; he has a lot of education in art. It’s hard being an artist in America in 2015.

    Lawd, have mercy!

    1. Won’t someone think of all the cater-waiters who’ve been slaving unnecessarily all this time?

    2. Hey, he has to pay back that 300k in student loans somehow!

    3. Looks like next year’s Courage Award has been identified.

    4. Hitting the rewind button now, looking for a time it was easy to be an artist in America anywhere…

  3. GAY PROSTITUTION EXPLOITS WOMEN!!!

  4. Thank you for concealing our identity, Scott.

  5. ;As far as the government is concerned, quite frankly I think for the most part, it’s a charade. It’s morality theater about, “We’re gonna go after these people who are expressing their sexuality in a way we don’t approve of.””

    That’s exactly right. And they use the “trafficking” label to justify it to the public, to hide behind, and to make it seem like they are protecting instead of punishing which is their true intent.

    1. In this case, it kind of rings of “see we are for equality, we bust male prostitutes too!”

  6. But what does Trump think about Rentboy?

    1. That’s two questions:
      1. What does Trump think about the product?
      2. What does Trump think about the business model?

  7. Assimilationist tendencies or pressure to assimilate?it just feels weird that Rentboy got shut down now, right on the coattails of marriage.

    Now, if I’m reading that right, that’s an interesting suggestion. It’s like a take on the Onion headline Gay-Pride Parade Sets Mainstream Acceptance Of Gays Back 50 Years. “Rentboy.com makes all gays look to the straights like sexual deviants, and it must be removed.” Of course, most of the mainstream didn’t have a clue Rentboy.com even existed, so the raid only served to shone a light on it. So that would defeat the purpose. I still think it was about the money.

    1. “I’d always thought gays were regular people, just like you and me, and that the stereotype of homosexuals as hedonistic, sex-crazed deviants was just a destructive myth,” said mother of four Hannah Jarrett, 41, mortified at the sight of 17 tanned and oiled boys cavorting in jock straps to a throbbing techno beat on a float shaped like an enormous phallus. “Boy, oh, boy, was I wrong.”

      I think Sugarfree in moonlighting at the Onion.

      1. There was a controversy, (real) back in the 90s about a big gay party that took place on Martha’s Vineyard. Apparently, every year they had to airlift people out to had a little too much feel-good candy. The locals started to complain.

        In an interview, the organizer of the party said that “drugs were a big part of the gay community, and straight people were just going to have to deal”.

        Hoo boy did that set off a firestorm inside the gay community.

        1. Once people self identify with a self interest group they are free to use it as justification. Show me a self interest group who’s “leaders” have not done this.

    2. I think it’s more vindictive than that — sully *our* marriages by requiring us to acknowledge gay marriage. Well, if you want to get married, we’re going to have to stop all this sleeping around, especially for money!
      FYTW

      1. What I don’t like is the gays are going to sully my divorce when they too start getting divorced in droves!

  8. FUCK THE POPE.

    1. No thanks

    2. 80% of Americans aren’t in any way Catholic, but the media reports on him like he’s a quarterback or something important.

      The Pope went to Cuba? So what? The Kardashian sisters went to Palm Springs, and 80% of America doesn’t give a shit about that either.

  9. I reiterate:

    Ashley Madison is the reason reason Rentboy got shut down. Someone very high in government, possibly in Homeland Insecurity, is a John and the arrests occurred and the database was taken to keep that information from coming to light.

    1. Wouldn’t seizing records be part of that?

    2. Doesn’t our John work at DHS?

      1. “It’s somewhat of a clich?, but not all Johns are jackasses.”

        But then again, “Doesn’t our John work at DHS?”

        We report, you decide.

  10. Um… reasonable is working again! Thanks, brymck.

    1. Yay!
      Thanks brymck

  11. I binged through both seasons of Bojack Horseman and it turns out the most depressing part about it is that it ends.

      1. OMG YOU BLEW IT, Now they all know he gets murdered by his best friend.

        1. MAAA THEY’RE BEING WEIRD ON THE INTERNET AGAIN

  12. I’m an artist too, you know.
    (sad face)

      1. Van Gogh sucked dicks too, you know.

          1. It was more like a pantry. It was a different time.

            1. I plan on stealing that some day.

            2. So small he could only fit in one ear…

  13. So what is their policy about sexually transmitted disease?

    Since male homosexuals have a high rate of sexually transmitted disease this would seem to be something that some sort of policy should be in place

    Some might think that is their personnel business, but the politicians have made such disease a cost to the taxpayer. The US federal government spends over $30 billion on AIDS and Obama Care has made insurance companies give insurance for pre-existing conditions, plus the State and local governments involvement all adds up to a big bill

    1. We should just ban homosexuality.

      1. That makes a lot more sense than cutting government. Prohibition always works.

      2. Wow, asking what a private organization which involves sex has as a policy about sexually transmitted disease is the same as banning homosexuality.

        It was my hope that they had some private answer to the problem and not leaving it to government and its taxing of others

        1. Your insinuation is that because the government steals billions of dollars from us to pay for something it’s now “our” business. Wrong answer. It’s still none of our business. You don’t like paying for it? Cut the government spending.

          1. Wrong answer. It’s still none of our business.

            Next, you’ll be saying the government can’t tell us what to eat when they are paying for our health care.

            1. Yep, I’m one of the crazies.

              1. It’s OK, we’re banning mental illness because it costs tax dollars. A peace officer will be over soon to cure you.

    2. “this would seem to be something that some sort of policy should be in place'”

      i’m sorry, you said you were a “libertarian”? Is that how that works?

      “their personnel business'”

      ‘we put a whole new spin on “staffing”‘

      1. We train ’em, you drain ’em.

        1. Well played.

      2. Its their personnel business until it hits my taxpayer wallet.

        All I asked was what their policy was, is that some sort of anti-libertarian question?

        1. Typically people in the sex-work business (porn or call-people) are regularly screened for STDs.

          (so i’m told)

          Its generally not good for business to kill customers and employees.

          1. “”Its generally not good for business to kill customers and employees”””

            Depends on the time frame, was a profit made, is there plenty of customers and employees?

            1. Almost sounds like a business would have to rely on its stellar reputation and external certification.

              Nothing spells reputational awareness like prudish anti-sex legislation

            2. sigh.

              Do you have a point, or are you waging war via speculative-rhetorical-question?

              I’m sure you could get Rentboy’s policy statements re: HIV if you care enough to look. Its also very easy to find data showing how the porn industry has been wildly successful in preventing STD spread for decades… despite the occasional high-profile example being used to try and pass a law demanding they use condoms

              The point made was that risky industries tend to strictly self-regulate by necessity. And they are always better at it than Government via regulation. Because the regulation simply creates a liability limitation and offsets responsibility to the Overseer.

              That i am explaining this to you at a place where everyone should already know this is just a little bit odd.

              1. I agree with Gilmore. Let’s ban black people too.

              2. If everyone knows about this then why is there still increasing sexually transmitted disease rate?

                And why does the Federal governments spending on AIDS for example at $31 billion and rising?

                http://kff.org/global-health-p…..t-request/

                1. You were asking about Rentboy and the STD risks in Sex-Work.

                  If you think somehow that male prostitutes are the ones primarily responsible for spreading HIV… you’d actually need to demonstrate that first before *assuming* it.

                  The fact is that – as noted – these kinds of orgs have policies preventing infection for obvious reasons of business-incentive.

                  That HIV is “still a problem” in the world, and that the US Government chooses to make it very-expensive to deal with is a separate issue entirely.

                2. “And why does the Federal governments spending on AIDS for example at $31 billion and rising?”

                  It’s called Theft and Pandering. It doesn’t mean you now own the people receiving the stolen money. You don’t like paying for it? Get the government to stop stealing.

              3. ” Its also very easy to find data showing how the porn industry has been wildly successful in preventing STD spread for decades…”

                Wait wait wait, one, this isn’t the porn industry, and two, I’d argue about their success.

                “The point made was that risky industries tend to strictly self-regulate by necessity.”

                See: Mexican Drug Cartels.

                No, they don’t, your premise is a lie.

                1. Yeah, the industries without recourse to law seem to have issues. Holy unforeseeable consequences.

                  1. Porn isn’t prostitution. It wasn’t my attempt to compare 2 dissimilar things that brought us here.

                    1. I’m so happy reasonable is back.

                    2. It appears Reasonable and Greasonable will both work at the same time. WHich is cool because I like parts of both.

                2. That’s super Tulpical, bro.

                  1. And you’re a stupid fuck, die in a fire.

                3. “The point made was that risky industries tend to strictly self-regulate by necessity.”

                  See: Mexican Drug Cartels.

                  No, they don’t, your premise is a lie.

                  Really? Try selling coke in Los Zetas turf without their blessing.

                  1. “Really? Try selling coke in Los Zetas turf without their blessing.”

                    I KNOW RIGHT!!!

                    SO AWESOME THAT YOU GOT THE POINT!

                    1. And you should be grateful that I deigned to teach you the point.

                      Are there any more misconceptions you hold that I may disabuse you of?

                    2. “And you should be grateful that I deigned to teach you the point.”

                      What a sad, pathetic, know-you-got-shut-the-fuck-up comment.

                    3. What a sad, pathetic, know-you-got-shut-the-fuck-up comment.

                      Yes, I’m glad you have enough self-awareness to know that you’re sad, pathetic, and know you got shut the fuck-uped.

                      Anything else I can help you with today? Or are you content with being stentorian and mendacious for now?

                    4. “Yes, I’m glad you have enough self-awareness to know that you’re sad, pathetic, and know you got shut the fuck-uped”

                      What a sad, pathetic, I know you are but what am I comment.

                    5. What a sad, pathetic, I know you are but what am I comment.

                      Yes, indeed. You keep posting these comments that are sad, pathetic, and merely “I know you are…”. There is no need for your tautologous statements. I know you’re sad and pathetic; you also know you’re sad and pathetic. Now that you realize this, perhaps you could work on your temper. It’s quite clear from your contribution to this thread that you have issues with managing your anger. Your spit-flecked rage may entertain some, less scrupulous, commenters on these fora, but I believe playing with you like the proverbial cat with his mouse would be sort of cruel considering that your Choleric state is currently clouding your judgement, rendering normal person-to-person interaction impossible.

                    6. “Yes, indeed. You keep posting these comments that are sad, pathetic, and merely “I know you are…”. ”

                      What a sad pathetic write a wall of text that no one will read cuz I’m butthurt type comment.

                    7. TUUUULLLLLLLPA. Good to see ya.

                4. This isn’t the porn industry…. SO LETS COMPARE IT TO INTERNATIONAL DRUG SMUGGLING”

                  bravo.

                  that was pretty stellar.

                  1. No worse that trying to sneak in the porn=prostitution canard you’ve been flogging.

                    1. ” the porn=prostitution canard’

                      The fact that both regularly screen for STD’s because their employees regularly swap body fluids as part of the job makes the comparison apt.

                      I don’t know much about the John-Screening (if any) process that places like Rentboy.com engaged in

                      (despite also being an Artist)

                      …but i’m fairly sure that, just like, say, the financial services business… they care to ensure their customers are ‘clean-enough’ to work with.

                      If you wanted to learn more, i’m sure you could poke around to get all the information you needed.

                      As has already been made clear = the idea that “above board” prostitution like Rentboy.com is somehow a *greater risk* for HIV transmission than grey-market ‘street’ prostitution is incredibly stupid and has little factual basis.

                    2. “The fact that both regularly screen for STD’s”

                      is false.

                      You lose.

                    3. Looks like Kizone is on work release.

                    4. Grow the fuck up.

                    5. Wonder were DJF went? Did MFA tag him out of the ring or is it not even bothering with a mask anymore?

                      Eh, who cares? I’m off to purchase a dishwasher; keep poking at it with a stick while I’m gone, boys!

                    6. What a sad pathetic I got shut up again type comment.

                    7. Tulpa, predictably pathetic as always.

                      He really does benchmark the lower limit for pity.

                    8. Always buy the extended warranty. Always.

                    9. Always buy the extended warranty. Always.

                      Especially with Samsung appliances. What junk.

                    10. “Especially with Samsung appliances. What junk.”

                      I have their front load washer and steam dryer. I almost feel sorry for Home Depot. It’s their insurance company that has to back those extended warranties.

                    11. Or is Tulpa also Kizone?

                      It’s all so confusing.

                    12. You should probably explain this to the activists engaged in HIV harm-reduction, who seemed to think things like Rentboy.com are vastly safer than street-prostitution.

                    13. “false””

                      I know the porn industry self-regulates and screens for HIV (and other STD)

                      I also think its logical to assume Rentboy.com did. If you have proof they did not, please share.

                    14. I also think its logical to assume Rentboy.com did.

                      How would they do that? Everyone that posts a profile must show up at the corporate HQ once a month to be tested?

                    15. I don’t know. How is it anything, no matter what they did – including mere ‘self certification’ – better/worse than simply picking someone up off the street?

                      There were some comments at an Advocate article about ‘Escort protesting’ where some said they were tested every other month. I don’t know if that was a requirement for listing one’s self as an escort or not… i’m not super hip to how online prostitution functions. But you’re free to look into it if you plan to make some contrary claim that they were giant AIDS-mills infecting and victimizing the public.

                    16. But you’re free to look into it if you plan to make some contrary claim that they were giant AIDS-mills infecting and victimizing the public.

                      Like all the SF bathhouses in the mid 80’s? That worked so well that 30-40%% of all new AIDS infections still occur among the 2% of the population that are gay males in 2013- 30 yrs after we knew what was happening.

                    17. If it’s anything like hetero hooker boards hookers and johns are very aware of STD’s. If people want to go w/o a hat it will be shared . The point is to play safely.

                      I don’t think it’s any different here.

                    18. Porn is filmed prostitution.

                5. two, I’d argue about their success.

                  citation required

                  1. also, versus government success? At anything?

    3. “Some might think that is their personnel business, but the politicians have made such disease a cost to the taxpayer.”

      Why not extend that to everything?

      Do you imagine we should support the drug war becasue ObamaCare puts us all on the hook for medical costs associated with meth and cocaine?

      Just because the government has has started paying for almost everything is no reason to stop standing up for personal freedom and against government involvement.

      If the government is paying for other people’s healthcare, that’s not a reason to oppose gay people being free to make choices for themselves. That’s an excellent reason to oppose the government forcing you to pay for other people’s healthcare.

      The progressives use the existence of Medicaid and other aid to the working poor as a justification for raising the minimum wage. If the government is paying for their healthcare because Wal*Mart is paying their employees so little, then why can’t we force Wal*Mart to pay their employees more? You sound just like the progressives! Maybe you should go become a progressive.

      1. Yes, lets extend it to everything, but here the subject was RentBoy

        And being against spending taxpayer money on private interests is now progressive?

        I was thinking we might get some private answers to the problem, but yelling progressive is all you are capable of.

        1. “Since male homosexuals have a high rate of sexually transmitted disease this would seem to be something that some sort of policy should be in place

          Some might think that is their personnel business, but the politicians have made such disease a cost to the taxpayer.”

          That wasn’t opposing spending taxpayer money on private interests.

          That was opposing private individuals being free to do as they choose because of taxpayer money.

          That’s a big chunk of what being a progressive is all about–using the government to force people to give up their right to individual choice for the “greater good”. If the shoe fits, why don’t you go ahead and wear it?

          1. Someones individual choice stops when it hits my taxpayer nose. Especially in this case when homosexuals have been so out front in getting the taxpayer to subsidize their diseases.

            So getting back to my question, do they have any private policies about sexually transmitted diseases. Ones that don’t involve my taxpayer wallet?

            1. “Someones individual choice stops when it hits my taxpayer nose.”

              Bullshit.

              You paying taxes doesn’t give you the right to use the government to impose your own choices on other people.

              Again, this is what progressives believe. It’s a huge chunk of what makes them progressive.

              Progressives think that because churches don’t have to pay taxes and yet they still get the benefit of government services (fire, police, national defense, courts, etc.), then that means government is justified in imposing whatever regulations it wants on churches.

              You’re a progressive in all but name. You probably imagine you’re different from them because you support Second Amendment rights or something, but your tactics and your logic are exactly the same as a shit-eating progressive.

              P.S. If taxpayers have to pay for the police, EMTs, hospitalization, and imprisonment of criminals associated with gun crimes, does that mean you as a taxpayer should be able to ban guns?

              Because that’s what progressives believe.

              1. You’re arguing with a couple disingenuous smegmabrained shitheads who have a Puritanical cause and will couch it in vaguely conservative terms like protecting taxpayers because they’ve lost the fight already.

                1. And yes, Tulpa is the progressivest progressive since progressivism came to progressivetown.

                  1. It’s Tulpa?

                    I should have known.

                    The willful obtuseness is a dead giveaway.

                2. SO don’t argue with people I don’t like!

                  1. One of the reasons we don’t like Tulpa is because arguing with him is pointless.

          2. So yelling progressive is all you’re capable of. Got it.

            1. Yeah, that’s all I’ve done here for ten years is shout progressive, and that’s all I’ve done in this exchange, too.

              1. Pretty much, yeah.

      2. “Why not extend that to everything?”

        I think that is exactly the point of socializing medicine. It is about control, not health. You can bet your last dollar that the broccoli mandate is coming.

        1. All the progressives, socialists, communists, etc., they all want the government to pay for as much as possible so that they can use the excuse that the taxpayers pay for it to justify imposing whatever restrictions they want on individuals and their rights.

          No way any libertarian should ever fall for that.

          It’s “No taxation without representation” not “No individual rights because of taxation”.

    4. Vouchers are the answer, of course.

    5. So what about them? How will shutting down RentBoy and all the other such sites and services, reduce the rate of infections? How will it reduce costs to the taxpayer?
      Making sex more anonymous, more dangerous, more clandestine, you raise the chance of infection, not reduce it.
      You utter moron. “Some freedoms had to be sacrificed because others had been compromised”
      No one wants to enslave everyone, just, you know, *them*.

      1. I did not call for them being shut down, only asked if they had any private policies to reduce the risk and cost of disease which is known to be among homosexuals.

        I pointed out the 31 plus billion dollars being spent by the US Federal taxpayer just for AIDS alone and its constant rise in cost.

        Is there no answer beyond ‘let the party roll”.

        And any complaint about the cost is just hate?

        1. The answer is to do a bit of investigation.
          Escorts tend to advertise their health status. Some advertise that they are on Truvada/PrEP.
          Review sites exist and serve to pass information along.
          Look, it’s a market — an escort infecting clients is no more likely to thrive in the market than a bottled water maker selling sewage. Government involvement invariably and inevitably leads to multiple breakdowns of ‘the market as information disseminator’.
          This is not, in any way, a question that does not occur to both escorts and their customers, nor to the agencies that provide mechanisms for letting the two connect. It is not something that is not happening.
          To suggest that “something should be done” seems to inevitably be the rallying cry immediately followed by “so the government must do something”.

  14. I can’t remember if it was somebody here saying that Fiorina isn’t playing the gender card.
    Here you go.

    1. Playing it? I’m surprised she hasn’t been doing “gender card-tricks”.

      That said, i think trying to explicitly go “Look I’m a Girl!” and start harping about gender politics is actually a really dumb mistake for her. I’m not sure GOP primary voters simply want “their version” of a token-female who makes identity politics a centerpiece of her campaign. She should probably just keep doing what she had already been doing quite well = demonstrating herself to be smarter, more sensible, and better composed than the other candidates. This “wahh wahh women dont get paid enough” shit isn’t the most compelling appeal.

      1. Is a gender card trick anything like that ping-pong ball trick?

        1. I need feminism because commodious spittoon is making ping pong ball jokes.

        2. I went to amsterdam with some friends… and I immediately got very ill and was consigned to the hotel room toilet for 24 hours. My friends went to a sex-show. They come back, and one of them is shirtless has black eye and cuts and has “HE-MAN” written on his chest in magic marker.

          I ask what happened, and they explain how Guy was taken on stage, and had his shirt taken off… and a women squatted over him and wrote that on his chest, No-Hands. Then he stood up and cheered, slipped and fell into a table of Dutch bodybuilders.

          I really, really wish i had been there.

          1. Amsterdamnnnnn.

            I wonder what STD rates are like there.

            1. I think Herion was a bigger problem for HIV transmission than sex-work. If i recall, the Government *does* license and screen sex-workers in the netherlands.

            2. Ask Tulpa. According to him, they don’t test for STDs, so the rates must be astronomical.

          2. I bet her “hand”writing is better than mine.

          3. “Guy was taken on stage, and had his shirt taken off… and a women squatted over him and wrote that on his chest, No-Hands.”

            I now feel like I’ve wasted my life.

            1. Well I could have told you that.

              /tosses hair back

  15. But Chris is an artist; he has a lot of education in art. It’s hard being an artist in America in 2015.

    Oh, NEA, why hast thou forsaken us?

  16. That’s what happens when a bunch of nihilists seize control of the government and shut it down.
    Artists- legitimate artists! with big doe eyes and sensitive souls- are compelled to suck cock on street corners to pay the rent on their studios.
    Why doesn’t a just and merciful god cast the Republikkkuntz into a lake of fire?

  17. I wish more people saw how interdependent our rights and freedoms are.

    Gay people’s right to make choices for themselves and fundamentalists’ right to make choices for themselves are interdependent. The right to make your own choices on Rentboy or who to bake wedding cakes for, it’s all the same right. Everyone who cares about Rentboy should stand up for the rights of fundamentalist bakers, and everyone who cares about the rights of fundamentalist bakers should stand up for the rights of Rentboy users, too.

    We should all be free to make choices for ourselves. Every injustice and every crime, every right and every freedom, they all boil down to people being free to make choices for themselves. And every time anybody–gay, fundamentalist, whatever–uses the government to impose their own choices on other people, it necessarily undermines that most basic right for all of us.

  18. That’s ridiculous, Ken.
    “I’m fine with responsible freedoms, but THOSE PEOPLE will just do something crazy.”

  19. We should just ban homosexuality.

    “By George, I think she’s got it!”

  20. “Ride sharing services”.

    Heh.

  21. Enjoy your Tulpa time, people. Browns are up and I got to train with Henry Akins yesterday. The sun is shining, the breeze is blowing, the beer is cold, the baby is sleeping. Everything is coming up Dr. Warty these days.

    1. You forgot to mention that Cal won yesterday and is now 3-0.

      And I made some delicious arbol chile chicken garnachas for brunch. Margarita and beach time.

      I wonder what Tulpa has planned today, other that being angry at his computer…

      1. The Redskins are up by 14 and the Hamilton fans can finally STFU about him equaling Senna, since Vettel just beat him to it.

        It is a good day.

      2. I wonder what Tulpa has planned today

        I imagine a vigorous day of enemas and scrotum binding.

        1. It’s Sunday so he’s downloading gay porn and photoshopping Obamas head on all the actirs.

      3. Redskins are winning, and I’ve got a nice big bag of Chipotle.

  22. Police cowardice. Maybe I don’t blame them for being cowards, but they are cowards. It is way easier to go after a teen age male having consenual sex with an under age teen girl who has ID that says she is legal age, and go after Rent Boy, than it is to do actual police work.

    Let’s ten of us beat the crap out of one old homeless guy as our police work for the day, for example. The alternative, to actually go after drug cartels and real criminals is….scary. Our heroes might get hurt, and we can’t have that happen. So, let’s waste our time on things that are meaningless.

    And…am I the only one who thinks some RentBoys are having to give free blow jobs to a local hero somewhere? Or else get arrested?

    1. 1. It’s already happening to female prostitutes.
      2. There are gay cops.
      3. Gay cops are just as sociopathic as the straight ones.

      Q.E.D.

  23. Rent Boy needs a John Deere.

    You can make an honest living bashing in the faces of others snarling to bash in yours if the people who advertise over all the blood spatter and bone fragments has a ticker symbol. Fucking generally doesn’t even involve concussions, broken bones, or dislocated spinal columns and yet adult cocks and vaginas penetrating and seizing rapturously after payment are treated like Kindergarten genitals by the most narrow-minded rancid fucks who don’t deserve a bowl of cheap-ass Ramen much less a goddamn plethora of violent levers to regulate the fucking bedrooms.

    Fucking gods of the galaxies bless this goddamn site with tons of shiny spaceships for the unparalleled attention they give to this issue.

  24. This dude broke rule number 1 in pooning….buy a burner phone with cash.

  25. People who have some sort of sense of entitlement, some sense of big ego, where they’re like, “I’m going to pay this person to treat this mainly as a sexual object.” There are definitely clients like that out there, because there are definitely people like that anyway out there. Bad clients are bad clients.

    Rather judgmental for a freaky gay male who likes his whores…

  26. Google pay 97$ per hour my last pay check was $8500 working 1o hours a week online. My younger brother friend has been averaging 12k for months now and he works about 22 hours a week. I cant believe how easy it was once I tried it out.
    This is wha- I do…… ?????? http://www.online-jobs9.com

  27. I see a blurred line between de stigmatizing of male homosexuality, including “service” for money, and decriminalization of prostitution, which the non-professionals associate with female, and picks up that the widespread sympathy for victims of the rent boy raid implies discrimination — that men have the right to buy and sell sexual gratification to each other, but women do not have the right to sell sexual gratification to men. That if they do, they are presumed victims, trafficked or pimped by men. That females as independent agents trading intimacy including access to their bodies remains evil, forbidden, beyond the pale, taboo. I call on male sex workers to show solidarity with female ones by pointing out they are, however discriminated against, privileged as a class, vis a vis female sex workers.

    The radio went dead when escort.com was raided in 2011 and they seized 6.4 million or in 2014 with the raid and closure on myredbook.

    So my question is why are #rentboys & the #LGBTQ community leaving #whorenation behind?

    1. As government assaults on sex worker communities continue, we are reminded of our roots and the path paved by activists from the Stonewall riots in 1969. People like Sylvia Riviera, Marsha P. Johnson, Miss Major Griffin-Gracy and other leaders of that time come to mind. They were fierce and courageous trans woman of color, many of whom had experience in the sex trade and found it impossible to separate the interconnected struggles of racism, homophobia, transphobia and whorephobia. Their struggles undoubtedly gave many of us in LGBTQ community the freedoms we have today.

  28. Reason rarely disappoints, but I really appreciate the magazine’s recent coverage of the sex work issue at a time when we are seeing both a renewed crackdown effort by authorities trying to police what happens in the bedroom when money’s involved, and also promising cracks in the facade of prohibition.

    Hearing from the clients of sex workers, as we do in this empathetic interview , is essential for the public to get a more realistic and less prejudiced view of our profession. In line with that though, I would request you to stop using the prejudicial and somewhat derogatory term “johns” to refer to those who pay for erotic services.

    Slang terms like this are not widely used to refer to the customers of health care practitioners, lawyers, real estate agents, and other self-employed service professionals, and they should be similarly avoided when talking about the clients of erotic service providers, who already suffer from an unfortunate level of stigma and marginalization, as this piece touches on.

    Semi-related note: Readers who want to help support the effort to decriminalize sex work are encouraged to donate to help fund an expected appeal of the Erotic Service Providers Legal Education and Research Project’s current lawsuit against the state of California’s 1961 anti-prostitution law. You can do so, and read more about the legal fight currently underway, at DecriminalizeSexWork.com.

  29. Another problem with the term “johns” which I forgot to mention in my previous comment is that it implies all clients of prostitutes are males, which is not the case, just as it is not the case that all prostitutes are female.

  30. Response to Bella Robinson — I deeply appreciate the work that many of my female sex worker colleagues have done in leading the struggle to decriminalize our profession.

    As for male sex workers being “privileged as a class” despite being legally discriminated against, you raise a legitimate point that women who provide sexual services are more likely to be “presumed victims, trafficked or pimped by men,” and have also, I would say, been more frequently targeted by law enforcement.

    However, it needs to be said that female sex workers are also privileged as a class in different ways. There is a reason why you never hear left-wing feminists who demand “equal pay for equal work” invoking this slogan when it comes to sex work, and that is because female sex workers tend to be paid significantly more than male sex workers.

    Libertarians like myself recognize that this disparity is simply an issue of supply and demand, and not some injustice that government needs to step in and outlaw.

    However, I do object to being labeled as “privileged” by female colleagues who — assuming equal levels of perceived conventional sexual attractiveness — are enabled by the market to charge significantly more than I do for performing essentially the same type of work, unless they simultaneously acknowledge their own substantial privilege in this regard.

  31. Let’s not misconstrue the gay sex for pay industry as generally innocent and beneficial, though there are instances in which it is. Its blatant deceptions, physical violence, and general depredations make the used car industry seem wholesome in comparison. The problem with the sex fantasy services industry is that since it is largely illegal there can be no legal contract or minimum standard of professionalism.

    First, the illegality of the industry encourages providers to advertise and agree to X, but then purposely refuse once payment has been rendered.

    Second, you can’t easily publish negative reviews as most of the review sites are financially supported by the providers, and the sites allow the providers to remove negative reviews.

    Next, without contracts providers change fees at will, and discriminatorily. What other industry can broadly, openly advertise, “No Whites,” or “No Asians” … and get away with it? Force other private industries to do business with the gay community, but allow gay businesses to discriminate based on race? Unfair.

    Legalize the sex industry and hold BOTH clients and providers legally responsible for their conduct.

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